Killer Angels

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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The Killer Angels, by Michael Shaara, portrays the Battle of Gettysburg during the time of the American Civil War. In the novel Shaara conveys many conflicting issues, dealing with the characters and gives a greater importance to the conflicts of the war, and to the soliders fighting it. While these issues are brought up, Shaara also includes accurate details to the battles and tactics fought using detailed imagery to describe the intense atmosphere of the war, leaving the reader with a better knowledge of the war.

Set in the summer of 1863 near the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the book deals with the issues concering the war and the realistic portrayal of the soldiers. Early on we see what the war is being fought for, at least the North's depiction of it, as Colonel Joshua Chamberlain delivers a moving speech to one hundred and twenty soliders, sent to him from Maine, who refuse to fight and want to return home.

In his speech he declares that although, many of the men that joined for different reasons, but the mian intent for fighting was for freedom. "Most fo us never saw a black man back home. We think on that too. But freedom.. is not just a word." This statement establishes the North's view on the war and their moral portrayal that all men should be free. The South's reasons for fighting, however different, were also for freedom. Although, it was not for the freedom of the black man, it was for the freedom for their way of life, and their moral belief to have slaves. This is all evident of Shaara's message to the reader. The war was not fought for land or the mere conquest of the enemy, it was fought because of cultural differences, and Shaara...